Wednesday 13 July 2016 was a historic day for more than the obvious reason. As David Cameron prepared to tender his resignation to Her Majesty and hand the keys to No.10 to Theresa May, the Supreme Court dealt a decisive blow to his Government’s plans to impose a residence test on those seeking legal aid.
A survey out this week showed one in three councils have failed to accept Syrian refugees – with most saying the cost of housing and supporting them far exceeds the amount central Government has agreed to provide.
This is a timely reminder of Government failures in the face of the greatest humanitarian crisis in recent history.
In the last few days we have seen a 57 per cent increase in racist and xenophobic attacks – hate crimes.
It would be naïve to think that such attacks are new. While we have made significant progress in pushing back against such intolerance, for some parts of our communities across the country the threatening undercurrent of prejudice has remained, barely contained beneath the surface.
We've had some notable successes, as have local campaigners – forcing several u-turns and watering down of the most unfair proposals. Despite this, worrying proposals continue to pop up around the country.
As Liberty’s membership officer I was delighted to see such a full house at our AGM on 18 June and to have a chance to meet so many impassioned members. As this year’s conference proved, there are a lot of us who care about our human rights.
Anything less than a thorough, comprehensive and procedurally irreproachable review will do a disservice to this important public debate. But, by undermining due process from the start, the Government has set the panel what looks like an impossible task.
Today is World Refugee day. To mark it, the UN Refugee Agency has launched a petition. It demands that national governments ensure every refugee child gets an education, every refugee family has somewhere safe to live and every refugee can work or learn new skills to make a positive contribution to their community.
Amid a collective failure of compassion that has seen barriers – both physical and legal – erected across Europe, and a wave of xenophobia sweeping the continent, the call couldn’t be more urgent.
Liberty today announced that it has written to Defence Secretary Michael Fallon to request a public inquiry into physical and sexual abuse at Deepcut barracks.
The call comes in the wake of the inquest into the death of Private Cheryl James – who died at Deepcut in 1995 – which exposed to public scrutiny the toxic, violent and sexualised environment in which Cheryl and other young soldiers lived.
Ahead of tomorrow’s AGM and Members’ Conference, this week saw another milestone in Liberty’s Military Justice campaign when it was announced on Tuesday that the Attorney General has given his consent for the family of Private Sean Benton to apply to the High Court for a fresh inquest into his death.